New Heart Pictures for Heart Health

Without heart pictures, many people won't find out they have heart disease until it's very advanced.

Now technology allows doctors to see the heart like never before. They want to see inside the arteries and see blockages that other more invasive tests might miss.

These can tell us what happened as a result of heart disease but we can't look at our heart like this before we get sick; or can we?

Technology that generates images using MRI could replace standard procedures. The new technology involves non-invasive ways to image the heart.

This is important because for 150,000 Americans a year, the first sign of heart problems is sudden death.

If you need more information about the heart and blockages than just photos of the human heart or if you want to take really good heart pics, especially of the animated heart and see beating heart animation, it can now be done.

Biomedical engineers have found an effective short cut for detecting abnormalities inside the muscle of the heart; a technique that could make routine cardiac stress tests more accurate and definitive.

Heart in Motion

Magnetic resonance images are "tagged" by magnetizing the heart and surrounding tissues with a special pattern.

This pattern makes the image look like there are lines running through it. The lines are straight at the very beginning of a heart cycle.

Later, when the heart is contracting in order to eject blood, the lines appear to be bent because the tag lines move with the heart muscle itself.

An image-processing filter is used to extract an image

When the heart moves, the underlying pattern of each harmonic image changes.

For example, compression of the heart muscle causes the crests of the sinusoidal pattern to move closer together while stretching or elongation causes the crests to move farther apart.

This means that there is a relationship between the frequency of a harmonic image and the compression and elongation (in other words, the strain) of the heart muscle.

Because of its speed and accuracy, this type of heart picture could be made part of the standard, 20-minute cardiac stress test that doctors now use to screen for heart problems. It could also eliminate the need for additional tests in some cases.

Fast and Sharp MRI Heart Pictures

These can show the interior workings of the heart muscle itself with additional image processing.

This is great for a screening test, so doctors don't rely on ultrasound, which reveals the heart as a solid unit where they must then infer from the movement of its overall shape if it is beating normally. Isolated abnormalities occasionally escape detection.

We can get animated vision that shows the internal workings of the muscle and structures to reveal trouble spots that might otherwise go unnoticed.

A healthy heart muscle contracts in a certain way, both in direction and magnitude.

To make a heartbeat video, a sequence of MRI images is tagged with markers. When played in sequence, the moving markers show the expanding and contracting muscle in such detail that it is possible to determine the mechanical strain in the muscle wall.

The motion of the tagged heart itself produces a signal, and this signal can be decoded to render the same high resolution images as those made through conventional image processing, only much faster.

Clinical imaging in real-time?

In a typical cardiac stress test, a physician uses a treadmill or drugs to make the patient's heart work harder using an electrocardiogram or ultrasound for an immediate assessment.

A heart MRI video produces a 2-dimensional view of the left ventricle, which pumps blood into the body and is the site of most coronary artery disease. In the image, doctors can clearly see if parts of the heart muscle are not flexing normally

When coupled with a typical cardiac stress test, this can quickly tell a doctor whether to prescribe a modified diet and exercise regimen or call for surgery.

Heart pictures that show the degree of heart health? There's nothing else that can do that right now. Like To Know More?

Heart Pictures for Heart Health

Map of the Human Heart

Actual Heart Images

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